Holmes is called to a manor house to investigate the brutal murder of a country lord with a fireplace poker and reconcile the story of his bruised and battered wife with the facts.



(by) (as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle), (developed for television by) | 1 more credit »




Episode complete credited cast:
Paul Williamson ...
Lady Mary Brackenstall (as Anne Louise Lambert)
Oliver Tobias ...
Mr Viviani


Inspector Hopkins invites Holmes to assist him in solving the brutal murder of Lord Brackenstall with a fireplace poker at his country estate. According to his bruised and battered wife, her husband was a secret alcoholic who kept his drinking discreetly hidden. On the night in question, she alleges that her house was invaded by a locally notorious thief and his two larcenous sons, who bound her, stole the family silver, bludgeoned her husband to death, and calmly helped themselves to some port wine. Lady Brackenstall denies that the obvious bruising on her face and hands are connected to the murder. When something about the three wine glasses used by the perpetrators bothers Holmes, his mind begins to move in a new direction. Written by duke1029

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Crime | Drama | Mystery


TV-PG | See all certifications »




Release Date:

16 July 1986 (UK)  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs



Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Although this was the first episode of the Granada series to be filmed with Edward Hardwicke as Watson, it was not aired until after "The Empty House" began Granada's "The Return of Sherlock Holmes" series. See more »


Lady Mary said that she had been born in Australia, but there is no trace of an Australian accent in the actress's voice. See more »


[first lines]
Inspector Hopkins: Far now?
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Version of The Abbey Grange (1922) See more »

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User Reviews

I personally found The Abbey Grange one of the better episodes of "Return..."
26 May 2012 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

I have always been a fan of the Sherlock Holmes Granada series, and while not my favourite of Return...(between The Devil's Foot and The Sign of Four) or of the series(too many to choose from), it is one of the stronger episodes and deserves to be better known. The story is not unfamiliar territory, but it is still as compelling as you'd expect a Sherlock Holmes story to be. What I also liked about the story, aside from how it drew you in with the suspense and the twists and turns, was not only that it didn't feel like a retread of another episode with a similar premise but I too like the episodes that show a more human side to Holmes and The Abbey Grange is one of those. The writing is intelligent, the music is hauntingly beautiful and the episode is splendidly and evocatively made. The supporting cast are solid, but the two leads are the stars. Edward Hardwicke is a loyal and quietly intelligent Watson, and Jeremy Brett's Holmes is as superb as you would expect. Overall, one of the better episodes of the "Return" series and falls into the category that deserves to be better known. 9/10 Bethany Cox

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